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  • left leg thigh numbness/ lower back pain

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    Old 11-01-2008, 09:52 PM   #1
    TSvette's Avatar
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    left leg thigh numbness/ lower back pain

    I am 41 years old. I hurt my lower back in 1992. At that time they called it an acummilative injury. The muscles expanded then retracted in a split second allowing my hips to shift. I went through physical therapy for 2 weeks, which included; Ultrasound, tens unit with hot packs, & stretching exercises.

    I went thru this from 92" to 97" on a regular basis. Each time x ray ,(not mri), they said they couldn't see anything wrong and I would do more physical therapy.

    In 2005. I went to a pain clinic, they did an MRI and found out I had a herniated disc at the L5 S1 area. It was a contained herniated disk, the Doctor thought I was a good candidate for nucleoplasty. After having that done, I went to PT for 2 days and had to quit. I was in alot of pain.

    In 2008 I had another MRI. This time it shows my L4 & L5 have a mild bulge. L5 S1 have severe degineration & my L4 has mild stenosis. I have constent pain in my lower back & my left thigh is numb with stinging pains at the end of the muscles at the knee. Dr. did 3 steroid epidurels. After the first one I couldnt hardly walk for 4 days. The 2nd one, mild stiffness. The 3rd one seemed to be right on the spot where the pain is coming from. I felt pain & pressure down thru my tailbone. All 3 injections I felt worse for the next few days - then got back to "normal" with the regular constant pain. I am now scheduled for more PT and was recommended possable disk fusion. I started reading posts like this, and one thing I have noticed is people with similiar l5 s1 l4 have leg pain, I have never had leg pain, shooting leg pain etc.. my pain stays in my lower back down thru my tailbone and out to my hip bones. Before the nucleoplasty my back didn't hurt until I threw it out, then it was excruciating, now my back doesnt go out but I have a constant pain that doesn't go away.

    Is this a disk or a joint problem or both?? Are the epidurels an indication to the problem ?? I don't like the idea of disk fusion, Is this the only option??

    Last edited by TSvette; 11-02-2008 at 12:45 PM.

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    Old 11-02-2008, 01:50 PM   #2
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    Re: left leg thigh numbness/ lower back pain

    Hi and welcome to the board TS. I am sorry that you have been suffering pain for so long.

    I want you to know that when my pain first started with the flare up in 2004, I had no back pain and only leg pain. I kept telling the drs it is not my back people it is my hip and leg and they kept telling me no it is your back. Well as time has gone on I have to say they are correct because my back kills me these days. My problem levels are L4 thru s1.

    Looking over your note - I am wondering what type of dr have you seen. Have you seen a spinal surgeon or a neurosurgeon? I think it is very important that you see a spinal surgeon (orthopedic doctor who has additional training in spinal surgeries) and/or neurosurgeon.

    Generally they try:

    *medrol pack - 5 days course of steroids
    *epidural injections - typicall 3 shots
    *nerve block/discogram is done to verify the levels giving the problems.
    *physical therapy
    *tens unit

    If you have stenosis, they sometimes try to do a decompression at that level to relieve the pressure off of the nerve. Other than that I am not sure if they will want to do a fusion or not.

    It sounds like you have done injections and pt so I would say it is definitely time to see a surgeon for a complete work up.

    Old 11-03-2008, 09:06 PM   #3
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    Re: left leg thigh numbness/ lower back pain

    Thanks 123dietdrpepper,

    I have seen a Doctor of anesthesiology/pain medicine, they did the steroid lumbar injections. And ordered an MRI after the first lumbar injection.
    Then I was referred for a
    EMG test. They provided a neurophysiology report.

    Next I was referred to a neurosurgeon. They have started me on an eight week schedule of PT, with a follow up December 29th

    Last edited by TSvette; 11-04-2008 at 09:45 PM.

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